LONDON (AP) — Frothy silent movie "The Artist" and moody spy saga "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" are among the leading contenders for the British Academy Film Awards, Britain's equivalent of the Oscars.
"The Artist" has 12 nominations and "Tinker Tailor" 11, including best picture and director nods, and best actor nominations for leading men Jean Dujardin and Gary Oldman.
The other best-film nominees are "The Descendants," ''Drive" and "The Help."
In a diverse field not dominated by any single film, there are also multiple nominations for "My Week With Marilyn," ''The Iron Lady," ''The Help" and "We Need to Talk About Kevin."
The best actor contest pits Oldman and Dujardin against Brad Pitt for "Moneyball," George Clooney for "The Descendants" and Michael Fassbender for "Shame."
Best-actress nominees are "The Artist'''s Berenice Bejo, Meryl Streep for "The Iron Lady," Michelle Williams for "My Week With Marilyn," Tilda Swinton for "We Need to talk About Kevin" and Viola Davis for "The Help."
Nominations were announced Tuesday and the prizes will be awarded at a ceremony at London's Royal Opera House on Feb. 12. They are considered an important indicator of prospects at the Academy Awards in Los Angeles two weeks later.
In recent years, the prizes, known as BAFTAs, have helped small British films gain momentum for Hollywood success.
In 2010, Danny Boyle's "Slumdog Millionaire" won seven BAFTAs, including best film; it went on to take eight Oscars. Last year "The King's Speech" won seven BAFTAs and four Oscars, including best picture.
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